Mirthala Salinas was due back at work this week after her two-month suspension from KVEA-TV (Ch. 52, Telemundo) Los Angeles, but instead she and Telemundo have parted ways. The former news anchor was at the center of an ethics scandal at the station over her affair with LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.
Following an internal investigation into how Salinas continued to report on air about the mayor even after her bosses became aware of the relationship, Telemundo President Don Browne suspended Salinas and KVEA News Director Al Corral each for two months without pay. KVEA President and General Manager Manuel Abud was reassigned and Ibra Morales, President of the Telemundo Television Stations Division, was reprimanded (8/6/07 TVBR #152).
As her suspension was coming to an end, Salinas was reassigned to KVEA’s Riverside bureau. The Los Angeles Times reports that several TV news crews, including those from KVEA and NBC Universal sister station KNBC-TV (Ch. 4, NBC), were on hand to cover her expected arrival. Instead, KVEA and Salinas issued an announcement that they "have mutually agreed to end our employment relationship."
Quick-thinking reporters from the LA Times asked Mayor Villaraigosa about Salinas’ decision to leave the station, but he denied knowing anything about it.